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  • Public speaking workshop

    For Defcon 18,

    I'd like to host a public speaking workshop on Thursday before the conference.

    We had speakers this year who could not hook up a laptop to the projector. Enough said? :)

    We can help prepare new speakers to convey highly technical information in the Defcon conference setting.

    Defcon presents us with an audience that is heavily sleep-deprived and either drunk or hungover. Cutting through that takes additional effort on the part of the speaker.

    I can do it by myself, but I'd welcome help as well. Surely I am not the only Toastmaster in the audience?

    Let's start planning now and raise the bar for quality of next year's presentations.

  • #2
    Re: Public speaking workshop

    Originally posted by wiseleo View Post
    I'd like to host a public speaking workshop on Thursday before the conference.
    You should probably check out "The Talk Talk" by Strom Carlson from ToorCon.

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Public speaking workshop

      A quick summary video played in loop in the 2nd half of the speaker room (away from the goons, so they don't have to hear it over and over) could help in a similar way.

      However, part of me wonders how a person could look to give a presentation and not know how to hook these things up, or request service to have them available.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Public speaking workshop

        I second this idea. There are quite a few Toastmasters that come to DEFCON. A few of us are even on the staff! Public speaking for nerds would be an excellent idea..

        I return whatever i wish . Its called FREEDOWM OF RANDOMNESS IN A HECK . CLUSTERED DEFEATED CORn FORUM . Welcome to me

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        • #5
          Re: Public speaking workshop

          Originally posted by TheCotMan View Post
          A quick summary video played in loop in the 2nd half of the speaker room (away from the goons, so they don't have to hear it over and over) could help in a similar way.
          actually, i was somewhat surprised about the speaker ready room this year... there was sort of a push (if i recall) in either the program or maybe it was the speaker acceptance and advice email (think it was the latter) stating that the green room would be speakers only, no hangout, very quiet, etc etc etc.

          it was not to be. i was really glad to have my materials all done and prepped and solid (something i actually try to take pride in, really) but there were a handful of other speakers in there trying to do last minute tweaks and having a hard time of it with the volume of chatter and laughter that was pretty constant then. it only cleared out when the senior staff pushed folk out of the room to let Adam have a private pre-talk landing zone.

          Originally posted by TheCotMan View Post
          However, part of me wonders how a person could look to give a presentation and not know how to hook these things up, or request service to have them available.
          one thing i heard mentioned in the green room were the specs to the projectors... how they were 1024x768 and max at 60Hz. (a) i was really pleased and impressed that DEFCON had things so on the ball (but not surprising, given that folk have been at this a while) as to have all rooms standardized and all specifications known.

          there was also a spare projector in that room, ostensibly just for laptop compatibility tests before one took the stage. i didn't see it get used much. (one guy diligently was trying it out... and having a battle with his PC)

          i would like that to become a standard practice for all cons, and plan on mentioning it to organizers. even if someone is a veteran of talking, making sure their system is five-by-five and all on the up and up before heading out is a really good idea.

          Originally posted by noid View Post
          I second this idea. There are quite a few Toastmasters that come to DEFCON. A few of us are even on the staff! Public speaking for nerds would be an excellent idea..
          strom's talk is a good guide and he hits a lot of the key points.

          i take a lot of pride in my presentations and always feel really good when people remark that slides were easy to understand or my pace was easy to follow, etc. if you wanted any advice or input etc on a public speaking workshop, i'd be happy to participate if people felt me worthwhile or useful.
          Deviant Ollam
          Semi-Professional Swearer
          Last edited by Deviant Ollam; August 8, 2009, 13:29.
          "I'll admit I had an OiNK account and frequented it quite often… What made OiNK a great place was that it was like the world's greatest record store… iTunes kind of feels like Sam Goody to me. I don't feel cool when I go there. I'm tired of seeing John Mayer's face pop up. I feel like I'm being hustled when I visit there, and I don't think their product is that great. DRM, low bit rate, etc... OiNK it existed because it filled a void of what people want."
          - Trent Reznor

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          • #6
            Re: Public speaking workshop

            One thing I have seen (although not at hacker cons that I have been to) is a larger monitor or flat panel TV either down toward the floor or somewhere in front of the speaker to displays the same video as the screen. It helps untie the speaker from his/her laptop. So sort of a "monitor monitor" instead of a monitor speaker.

            Obviously dependent upon the size of the con and the resources available, but it would be a nice addition.

            (also, for those with laptops like mine that don't have an intermediate setting that displays both VGA out and on the laptop! Although this could possibly be the only laptop in the world that doesn't do that. )
            "\x74\x68\x65\x70\x72\x65\x7a\x39\x38";

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            • #7
              Re: Public speaking workshop

              Speaker Operations would be glad to have you give this talk.
              AMFYOYO

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Public speaking workshop

                Originally posted by Agent X View Post
                Speaker Operations would be glad to have you give this talk.
                This sounds like a good addition to DC101; even though I voted no.
                "\x74\x68\x65\x70\x72\x65\x7a\x39\x38";

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Public speaking workshop

                  I think this would a good idea, I'm more than happy to help out if I can. I love public speaking and I'd like to think I can help out if you need it.

                  I felt sorry for some of the people presenting because I could see that they had great presentations but they didn't know how to present properly and failed to get their message across to the audience. I had a comment on my blog after my talk saying something similar:

                  "It was refreshing to hear someone with presentation skills giving a speech on something interesting. The unfortunate majority of individuals presenting at DEFCON (though undoubtedly unintentionally) really lacked the ability to effectively present to a large audience."

                  I'd have to say the same as Deviant with regards to the Green Room this year, it wasn't quite as peaceful as I'd imagined it would be. I thought it would be just the speakers and the relevant goons but there were a lot more people than that with people laughing and joking, on the phone etc.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Public speaking workshop

                    Originally posted by securityninja View Post
                    "It was refreshing to hear someone with presentation skills giving a speech on something interesting. The unfortunate majority of individuals presenting at DEFCON (though undoubtedly unintentionally) really lacked the ability to effectively present to a large audience."
                    I'm not sure a Thursday talk is going to adequately prepare somebody to give a talk if they aren't comfortable speaking in front of a group. It's not really something that you suddenly "get" -- especially if it's a day or two before your presentation time.

                    I'm all for such a talk because, honestly, some of the presentations at DEFCON 17 were BRUTAL. Good material, but the delivery was just so bad that all I could concentrate on was the actual delivery and not the technical content. Every little bit will help.

                    I'd be thrilled to help any way that I can put this together and deliver it. I talk in front of "captive" audiences everyday!

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Public speaking workshop

                      Hi Club,

                      I do agree with your first point, one workshop might not help too much but I think some people are only a few pointers away from being a good presenter.

                      It could also benefit future DEFCON presenters as well if we let anyone attend and not limit it to speakers for this year.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Public speaking workshop

                        Yes, open to anybody that's interested. It seems to fit well with the Thursday model if DEFCON 18 is going to include the formal Thursday sessions again.

                        Even if an attendee is never going to speak at DEFCON (or similar), many of the attendees will have to give class presentations, give information at a company meeting, and try to convey technical material to a non-technical audience (think: presenting IDS details to the C-level people in your organization).

                        I think it'd be a great topic and one that I'd encourage anybody to attend. Heck, I think we could aggregate a lot of pointers from the DEFCON community to pass along in the session. Let's do this!

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Public speaking workshop

                          Again I agree with your points

                          I'll volunteer to work on this with others if DEFCON 18 has the Thursday track again and they want this presentation on it.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Public speaking workshop

                            Hi,

                            I wondered if anyone really wanted to push on with this idea? I'd like to see how we could make this real if defcon wants it.

                            If anyone is interested in doing this then please let me know and we can begin planning. I will be in LV for defcon again this year (and hopefully speaking again!) so I'm more than happy to do this workshop.

                            SN

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Public speaking workshop

                              Well, we can submit the idea when the CFP opens. Can't hurt, right? I'll help you pull it together and administer the session if we hit it!

                              So, consider me 100% supportive of helping you. You can PM me as we put the proposal together. Thanks for putting this back on the front burner!

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